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Old 01-05-07, 06:23 PM   #1
LastPlace
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29" Wheels...........

I have never seen an explanation of.....and don't know how to search for.......information on 29" wheel sets.

What is the point? Is it better for commuting, better for touring, or is it a marketing exercise by the bike industry?
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Old 01-05-07, 06:27 PM   #2
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Better get on some asbestos underwear. 29" wheels are a topic not unlike religion or politics.
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Old 01-05-07, 06:46 PM   #3
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I am one who fails to see the point. Standard 26", 700C, and 27" wheels have served us well for decades, and I certainly feel no urgency to change.
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Old 01-05-07, 08:25 PM   #4
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They are actually 700c wheels. The 29" or 29er, refers to the approximate diameter of the tire as mounted on the rim. It is a mountain bike thing..... read all about it HERE.

If you are riding a 700c, there is no need to change.... you're already riding a 29er.
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Old 01-05-07, 08:44 PM   #5
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On a mountain bike which normaly has 26" wheels, 29s are supposed to roll over bumps better, and, from what I've read, they have some advantages in certain situations. Probably just a passing fad.
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Old 01-05-07, 10:36 PM   #6
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The same wheel seem to be becoming the dominant wheel amongst road bikes and hybrids. Nearly every bike I've looked at has had 700c wheels.
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Old 01-05-07, 11:08 PM   #7
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29" wheels are not interchangeable with 26". The 29er bikes have frames built for that size wheel. I have not ridden one myself, but some of the local MTB riders swear by them. Others swear about them. The larger diameter wheels are supposed to roll over obstacles more easily and they tend to keep rolling once you get them going. Drawbacks include slower acceleration and less lateral stifness in the wheel.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/29%22er
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Old 01-06-07, 06:07 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluesDawg
29" wheels are not interchangeable with 26". The 29er bikes have frames built for that size wheel. I have not ridden one myself, but some of the local MTB riders swear by them. Others swear about them. The larger diameter wheels are supposed to roll over obstacles more easily and they tend to keep rolling once you get them going. Drawbacks include slower acceleration and less lateral stifness in the wheel.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/29%22er
Your explanation makes sense to me. I had a discussion a while back with my LBS. He says the main reason 700's have become dominant (almost exclusive) as a wheel size is because Mfr's don't really want to support a variety of wheel sizes. It's a matter of efficiency for them.

That's why high quality new 27" stuff is hard to find.

He built up a road bike with unusually small wheels that he swears give him an advantage against other road riders (sorry, I cannot cite specific wheel sizes or other modifications). I am not conversant with all the reasons why - but he is a straight shooter who is always experimenting with different set-ups.

It certainly makes sense that larger wheels would be less affected by bumps, etc. It also makes seems to me that you would be trading off some nimbleness in handling for the same reasons that you should experience some inertia advantages ("keep rolling once you get them rolling").

. . . an interesting topic even if I can make no expert contributions.

Caruso
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Old 01-06-07, 05:48 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carusoswi
Your explanation makes sense to me. I had a discussion a while back with my LBS. He says the main reason 700's have become dominant (almost exclusive) as a wheel size is because Mfr's don't really want to support a variety of wheel sizes. It's a matter of efficiency for them.

.........................snip........................ . . . an interesting topic even if I can make no expert contributions.

Caruso
The Mfr's still have to support a variety of widths for the 700c rims. Road rims are about 17-19mm, Cyclocross around 22mm and 29er MTB are 27-29mm... or wider.
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Old 01-06-07, 06:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogbait
They are actually 700c wheels. The 29" or 29er, refers to the approximate diameter of the tire as mounted on the rim. ...
OK, that makes sense. My first introduction to "large" tire dimensions was circa 1970, with European imports with 28 x 1-5/8" tires, which were mounted on 622mm (700C) rims. Add 1/2" to the tire width, and the diameter grows to 29"; subtract 1/2", and it shrinks to about 27". Thanks for the clarification.
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Old 01-06-07, 07:40 PM   #11
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26x3.0's on 65mm wide Large Marge vs 2.35 29er's on 44mm wide 700C SnoCat rims.
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Old 01-06-07, 07:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by big john
On a mountain bike which normaly has 26" wheels, 29s are supposed to roll over bumps better, and, from what I've read, they have some advantages in certain situations. Probably just a passing fad.
Great explanation, but I don't think you're correct about the fad thing. A lot of guys I know are interested in the larger wheel size and now a number of manufacturers are offering 29ers. I've got enough problems dealing with 26inch wheels so no 29er for me.
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Old 01-06-07, 08:58 PM   #13
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I've thought about getting a new mtb but I'm not sure the 29 thing would be an advantage for me. Besides, I mostly ride road.
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Old 01-06-07, 09:12 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carusoswi
Your explanation makes sense to me. I had a discussion a while back with my LBS. He says the main reason 700's have become dominant (almost exclusive) as a wheel size is because Mfr's don't really want to support a variety of wheel sizes. It's a matter of efficiency for them.
Caruso
Although 29ers run on 700c rims, these are generally new rims, built specifically for offroad. The 29er wheel is an increase in the variety for manufacturers, not a decrease.
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Old 01-06-07, 09:17 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carusoswi
It also makes seems to me that you would be trading off some nimbleness in handling for the same reasons that you should experience some inertia advantages ("keep rolling once you get them rolling"). Caruso
You would think so, but the guys I know who ride them say they are actually more nimble and turn better in some technical singletrack situations.
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Old 01-07-07, 08:35 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluesDawg
You would think so, but the guys I know who ride them say they are actually more nimble and turn better in some technical singletrack situations.
Interesting. The guys in the shop that I work at all ride 29'ers. Their collective opinion is that the 29'ers are slower handling.
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Old 01-07-07, 10:13 AM   #17
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I'm sure not going to debate my interpretation of second hand information vs. yours (lol). Note the key word "some" in my post.
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Old 01-07-07, 10:47 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by BluesDawg
I'm sure not going to debate my interpretation of second hand information vs. yours (lol). Note the key word "some" in my post.
I totally agree. I own a mountain bike but I haven't been mountain biking for a year and a half. The last thing that I'd buy myself would be another mountain bike so I have no first hand experience at all and only curiosity interest in 29er wheels. The fact that guys from different parts of the country could come up with such opposite opinions is probably an indication of how insignificant the difference (if any) really is.
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